Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Christmas gift suggestions:

To your enemy, forgiveness.
To an opponent, tolerance.
To a friend, your heart.
To a customer, service.
To all, charity.
To every child, a good example.
To yourself, respect."
~ Oren Arnold

Find this and much more for Christmas including screen savers, recipes, activities, stories, poems, songs and much much more 

Monday, November 29, 2010

The Firefighter's Night Before Christmas

"Twas the night before Christmas and all through the town,
The fire siren echoed blaring its sound.
The firefighters came running from far and from near,
And raced to the trucks quickly donning their gear.

And I in my bunkers, my boots and my hat,
Jumped to the engine to see where the fire's at.
Down at the corner of Fifth and Oak,
The dispatcher informed us of a house filled with smoke.

Smoke poured from the sides, from up and from down,
Yet up on the roof there was none to be found.
So up to the rooftop we raised up a ladder,
And climed to the top to see what was the matter.

I came to the chimney and what did I see,
But a fellow in red stuck past his knees.
Well we tugged and we pulled until he came out,
Then he winked with his eye and said with a shout.

"These darn newfangled chimneys they make them too small,
For a fellow as I, not skinny at all."
With a twitch of his nose he dashed to his sleigh.
and called to his reindeer, "AWAY now, AWAY."

As we rolled up our hoses he flew out of sight,
Saying "God bless our firefighters" and to all a good night.

***Author unknown, as this was given to me.***

Christmas Decorating... 2010

.... And the children were nestled all snug in their beds, while visions of making decorations and trimming the tree kept them up and talking while lil' Gracie jumped in her bouncy seat.

I am about ready to bust the gut from laughing. Really. SERIOUSLY.

The LOOOOOOOOONNNNG... (almost really TOO LONG, seeing as the kids don't go back to school until Tuesday) weekend over the Thanksgiving holiday, I decided to take the holiday, trash the house and let me the kids have fun doing it.

Well, no that really wasn't the plan, though I think that's what ended up happening. We actually had a lot of fun.

Thanksgiving, Katie got to have a date with the Turkey, stuffing it before we put it to baking. She was all excited. The fun began when the Turkey actually cooked a little faster than what we had expected with it being our first time using an electric dutch oven. The bird was very delicious and very tender though I did not get the time to make the candied carrots as I thought I would have had time for. 
We went down to the Akron Children's Hospital tree festival after dinner to walk off all of that dressing we ate.

The 4 "NOT ME-s" with Santa.  This was Gracie's first photo with Santa!
Friday, we went "whopping" which in my terminology means going shopping without a really well planned out list of items we were in need of. We ended up at the good ole "HOBBY LOBBY" and while we were all having fun, me and the kids kind of went a little hay-wire in the craft idea department of our brains.

We ended up buying about $75.00 worth of material for what I thought were about 6 projects, but I think it actually ended up being about 12 after seeing everything else we could do with what we ended up taking home with us.

One of the projects we ended up doing first, I got the instructions offline to create.  They were "Christmas Spiders" with the legend behind the beginnings of Tinsel on the tree.  We ended up making 3-4 after dinner, then Brianna ended up making a whole lot more on Saturday while we pretty much all went different ways and ended up working on different crafts or watching TV or playing on the computer. I think it's been the first time in a long time that we actually just sat around the house, no cleaning involved, and just "vegitized" ourselves for a while.  Shoot, fireman actually spent some time in the garage doing his woodworking.
Our Christmas spiders... Ornaments with a meaning.

The fun part of working on these projects was sitting there and talking and kidding with the kids.  Brianna is so bright and bubbly, she is almost addictive.  Katelyn is sweet- though she tends to be very shy around me and not wanting to act up or be as crazy as Brianna is.  Gracie- she sat in her excersauser and entertained us as she has since found her voice and loves to do that high pitched squeal and babbling.  Steven watched his movies and played on the computer, actually turning in for bed early.

Another project we began was a "Christmas Paper Ornament".  We saw these at the Tree Festival and I looked up how to make them online.  They are still asking for paper to make more, they love them so much!
Brianna with one of her paper ornaments

I sat down Saturday and worked on a Swiffer dust mop that is actually pretty cool. I think I really need to figure out a new back that keeps it attached to the mop though because it ended up being pretty weird the way it ended up.  I was rushed also, so that won't help. 

We usually decorate the tree on Thanksgiving, but with all of the down-pouring rain we decided to wait instead of running all of the Christmas boxes from the barn into the house, so we ended up decorating the tree tonight. I actually got some neat ideas from the Tree Festival, so I made sure I got the items needed to re-create those for the tree... Some of the photos.....

For some reason I just get a real "country" feel when I have raffia involved in a project!

New garland; blue beads and silver beads and snowflakes...

I found some neat floral arrangement materials- wish they had more than just "RED"

The front of the tree near the star.  Notice we always have a bird on/in the tree.  This year we are hoping for better luck, so the kids decided it needed to be in the front and near the star!

These are "icicles" that the kids made last year for Christmas.  Brianna insists that they have to be "at the bottom of the tree- Where else would they form?"

I found wild and whispy floral decorations that I love to add to the tree -
One of the paper ball ornaments Brianna made

This was a joint effort... Garland that is made out of gum drops, strung onto thread and then we took Tulle and wrapped it around the drops along with tie-ing natural raffia every so often to keep it together better. Word of warning... when we attempted this I was not prepared for such sticky hands!  The good thing is that the gel helps the gumdrop settle into place on the string to keep it from moving as much.

 At least the tree is done.  An accomplishment, considering I knew what I wanted but dreaded doing it.  I absolutely despise pulling all of the limbs up and out to try to shape the tree.  Note to self: teach the kids to do it! 

Friday, November 12, 2010

Yes, It's been a while

Why? Life Happens. It just happens. Just when you think you are getting on your feet once again, where did they hide that metal ball bat? Oh it's where? Usually I find it and usually it's dealing with me or my life.

Why is it that when I actually get the nerve to type up something for my blog the baby is screaming (4 month shots today) or one of the kids did something to another kid, and then you just get to the point where you tell the kids to "duke it out" after you take them to a local cemetery to pick out their plot first. Natural Consequences, Right? I am not going to be on this Earth their entire life to break up fights and re-direct...

Now as far as this Metal Ball bat... it's imaginary.. We named it "Murphy" as in Murphy's Law.

Just when you least expect it Murphy comes into your home and wreaks havoc all over your family.

Anything that can go wrong will go wrong... At the worst possible moment.

GERD. Puking. A diaper that's been filled so much (without the help from the good old prunes) up to the point of the shoulders (and yes, a bath WAS required!).

A school up in arms with the community and vice versa over a levy. Pay to Play.

A hubby who was in a Semi Truck Accident (That's a totally different beast and will not need to say any more)

A house that gets cleaned, only for a gust of wind, a tornado and hurricane (yes I gave them the wrong names at birth) to come ripping into my house and destroy all of the "gusto of all glory" of cleaning jobs.

Life Happens.

How about that little itsy bitsy shot glass that is put on that serving tray with all of the 2500 glasses.. and they say that one shot glass can't break the balance.

How about everyone thinking you are mean and nasty and have nothing at all nice to say, when inside you want to scream "Honey you haven't heard the best part!!"

How about trying to balance life. Just TRYING to balance it..

Asking for help when you are usually the one someone calls for help... That's a touchy for me!

Ever have something said to you that you are not sure if you should take it one way or another?

Post Par-tum Depression... YUP totally here and dealing with that as well. Ever sit around and just think you just wanna ball over a crumb being on the floor after you just swept and scrubbed that said floor ON YOUR HANDS AND KNEES!

How about not signing your kid's homework assignment book because the assignments were not put inside and they EXPECT you to sign it anyways... HA HA! Try sending it back to school, not filled out and NOT signed, only to have the teacher write in the book that the assignments were online. Ha! Where is the natural consequence for not writing it in! How are they expected to learn! As in the book "Getting your children to mind without losing yours... "sometimes you gotta pull the rug out from under the little buzzards to make them fly" - Well, at least that's how I remember it going and I was doing pretty good to remember the verse much less the book.

Life Happens.

When Life happens. I go quiet. I sulk. I remember that when you feel sorry for yourself it makes you weak.

There are soooo many other problems in people's lives that are worse than my own.

I need to shake the dust off that has settled upon my back and get rid of the black rubber marks from all those tires running over me and fight back.

It's out. I don't really care if someone thinks I am bitching or not. HA. I don't need validation from anyone. These are real feelings. I feel them. If others don't approve... then hey don't read it.

I wanted to write a nice and pretty blog post for today... Guess it's just turned into a rant.

On another note; This is something Nora sent me that really hit home with things here. I hope it helps you as well.

Fable of the porcupine 
It was the coldest winter ever. -  Many animals died because of the cold. The porcupines, realizing the situation, decided to group together.  This way they covered and protected themselves; but the quills of each one wounded their closest companions even though they gave off heat to each other. After awhile, they decided to distance themselves one from the other and they began to die, alone and frozen. So they had to make a choice: either accept the quills of their companions or disappear from the Earth. Wisely, they decided to go back to being together. This way they learned to live with the little wounds that were caused by the close relationship with their companion, but the most important part of it, was the heat that came from the others. This way they were able to survive.

Moral of the story:
Learn to love even those little pricks in your life.